Healthcare and public services

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    Healing alone: how social capital reduces health care inequality, particularly in large diverse states

Healing alone: how social capital reduces health care inequality, particularly in large diverse states

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Since the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), millions of low-income Americans have gained access to publicly funded health insurance. Yet, the American states have remained critical stakeholders in the Trump era for fighting persistently high levels of inequality in access to health care. Using data from the fifty states, Ling Zhu examines trends in […]

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    Despite very different beginnings, China and America now have a great deal in common in how social policy provision is organized

Despite very different beginnings, China and America now have a great deal in common in how social policy provision is organized

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At the beginning of the latter half of the 20th century, policy approaches in China and the US to providing social benefits, such as education and health care, were very different. China’s model was one of centralized control, while in the US a state-based approach to implementing social policies was favored. In new research, Daniel Béland, Philip Rocco, Shih-Jiunn […]

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    Partisanship was not the only factor in how Obamacare exchanges were adopted by the states.

Partisanship was not the only factor in how Obamacare exchanges were adopted by the states.

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Following the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, many US states adopted their own Obamacare health insurance exchanges, many did not, and some opted for partial administration. In new research, Shihyun Noh argues that states were more likely to run health insurance exchanges in partnership with the federal government when they received financial incentives, had fewer state […]

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    Officials can nudge public behavior by showing that they are responding to people’s demands

Officials can nudge public behavior by showing that they are responding to people’s demands

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A key aim of public policymaking is to change public behavior in one way or another. In new research which focuses on voting patterns in Colorado, Andrew Menger and Robert M. Stein tested a number of ways of encouraging people to return their mail-in ballots early. They find that only message which increased early voting was one which explained […]

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    State and local agencies are more effective than the federal government in housing discrimination enforcement

State and local agencies are more effective than the federal government in housing discrimination enforcement

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Discrimination by those selling or renting homes is illegal under the 1968 Fair Housing Act (known as Title VIII), but housing discrimination and segregation in the US have not been eliminated. Federal, state, and local agencies are responsible for enforcing Title VIII, so in which part of government is enforcement most effective? In new research which analyses data from […]

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    Donald Trump’s interim Opioid Commission report did not mention drug courts. Here’s why that’s a positive step.  

Donald Trump’s interim Opioid Commission report did not mention drug courts. Here’s why that’s a positive step.  

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Last week, President Trump declared America’s opioid crisis to be a “public health emergency”, announcing measures to tackle the problem including expanding access to treatment. John Collins writes that, in a positive and perhaps surprising move, in its interim report, Trump’s Commission did not mention drug courts, a politically popular approach to tackling substance-abuse. He argues that drug courts, […]

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    Expert organizations can be effective in correcting health misinformation on social media

Expert organizations can be effective in correcting health misinformation on social media

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While social media can be a great source of information and insight, it is also awash with misinformation. How can social media users combat this? In new research which focuses on health information, Emily Vraga finds that single tweets by social media users are ineffective at correcting false information, but they can be effective if they are followed by […]

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    Uncooperative federal government has led to innovation on marijuana policy in more liberal, less religious states.

Uncooperative federal government has led to innovation on marijuana policy in more liberal, less religious states.

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In the past two decades, 29 states and Washington DC have liberalized their laws on the use of medical marijuana – in defiance of federal regulations. A. Lee Hannah and Daniel J. Mallinson look at why some states have become ‘defiant innovators’ in this area. They find that if a state is more liberal and less religious, if the […]

Deconstructing the myths behind Medicare and Medicaid

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Medicare, health insurance for the elderly, a universal program for which all Americans become eligible when they reach retirement age; and Medicaid, health insurance for the poor are two often conflated and misused concepts. George Klosko deconstructs Medicare and Medicaid’s different histories and structures and misconceptions about the contributory nature of each.

As Congress struggles to repeal and replace the […]

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    Democrats are more likely than Republicans or Independents to blame genetics for obesity – including their own.

Democrats are more likely than Republicans or Independents to blame genetics for obesity – including their own.

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More than 70 percent of American adults are overweight, with over a third in the obese category, but the public in general does not support a greater role for government in tackling this problem. In new research, Don Haider-Markel and Mark Joslyn look at whether or not Americans think that obesity is caused by biology or a result of […]

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